6542

Discussion in 'Vintage Rolex Watches' started by opahman, Apr 16, 2011.

  1. opahman

    opahman

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    Hello Rolex vintage lovers.

    I am looking to purchase a 6542 and would like to be as educated as possible. I love the history behind the 6542 and the plastic bezel insert with the radiation problem is very cool.

    Any info would be great. More the beter.

    Thanks,
    Opahman
  2. Pete17

    Pete17

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    G'day mate, the 6542 is probably the holy grail of the GMT line.
    So few are in original condition these days. The old bakelite bezel inserts were prone to cracking and very, very few have survived in a decent condition.
    Extremely good fake bakelite inserts can be found on the ebay and the forums. Some are so good they regularly confuse the experts.
    New Old Stock Rolex bakelite inserts are a myth IMHO. The ones you see for sale are fakes. (my opinion only)
    Ocassionally a half decent original insert comes onto the market but they are mega bucks.
    Also worth noting is that the early bezel rings themselves were bakelite and coated to look like metal.
    An all original 6542 would be an honour to own but it is one watch I would be very careful with when wearing due to the fragile bakelite insert.
    However, you could always get one of the later 6542's with the updated metal insert..

    The old radium dials have a great character to them but they too are darn hard to fine in decent condition. Most seem to have faded/spotted in an uneven manner.
    But good dials can be found if you're patient enough. Check out the one owned by Steven at the top of this page - stunning dial!. http://www.timekeeperforum.com/showthread.php?5709-TKF-Vintage-Pic-Thread/page20

    Some things to take into account.....
    The 6542 could be had with or without a cyclops according to the Rolex brochures from the 1950's.
    The first 6542 had a 50m depth rating in red on the dial. ' Very Rare! Never seen one myself.
    The early 24hr hands had the lume applied on top of the triangle. Later 6542's had a cutout within the triangle which had the lume applied from beneath as per all Rolex hands today.

    Check out Ed Delgado's great site and the article by tomvox1.
    Superb pics and a must read for any GMT fan.
    http://doubleredseadweller.com/gmt.htm

    Good luck with the search. Be patient and don't pull the trigger until you get the watch that you want.
    The 6542 is beautiful watch in its own right. Along with the Submariner and Explorer it is a true classic from the golden years of Rolex.

    Cheers!
  3. Nicko

    Nicko

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    There's one for sale on VRF and to show you that these are definitely a grail watch, the bezel is $5k more than the watch...

    From the sales add:


    [​IMG]

    watch is 4xxxxx serial
    all numbers are clear
    bezel and insert are original, with minor cracks as it should have
    OCC swiss gilt dial appears to be radium and still glows.
    hands have been redone at some point.
    running and keeping good time

    :crazy::crazy:

    watch w/bezel complete @ $22k
    bezel and insert alone @ $15k
    watch w/service bezel and insert (not shown)@ $10k
  4. Pete17

    Pete17

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    JB is a reputable dealer but not the best photographer! LOL
    Those old bakelite bezels aint cheap.
  5. SPACE-DWELLER

    SPACE-DWELLER

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    Great stuff, mate! :thumbsup: :goodpost:
  6. Vincent65

    Vincent65

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    I've seen a bakelite bezel alone for 11,000 Euros! Nice info Pete!
  7. Pete17

    Pete17

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    Crazy stuff isn't it Karl.
    The cost of vintage pieces is hard to justify to sane people.

    Sent from my Droid
  8. Vincent65

    Vincent65

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    True, Pete - supply and demand. It's the same with other seemingly 'worthless' things, like little rectangles of printed paper {stamps} worth thousands to collectors. Or old bits of cut and polished carbon {diamonds}, or even rare vintage cars - a Ferrari worth millions?
  9. Nicko

    Nicko

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    So true, and how about those $300 tritium pearls! :banghead::banghead:
  10. king001

    king001

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